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need opinions on how to handle this situation:

I have a 2010 Outback 2.5 premium 95K miles that had a heat shield rattling issue in the past. well recently I heard the exhaust leak noise. Brought it to Midas and they removed all the heatshields and stated that the catalytic converter and assembly needs to be replaced and that I'd have to come back another day to drop it off so they could calculate the costs on parts and such. (12 days ago) During that time I discovered the converter is actually a warrantied part 15yr/150K miles. Dealership Tuesday and called it in and said they could cover the part but because there are no heatshields they'd have to charge me for those. ($585 parts + $210 labor). Midas never put the heat shields back on and I didn't think much of it then.

I called another dealer and they quoted me heatshield parts at $385. Hmmmm. Also if first dealer stated if heat shield were on then Subaru corp would cover them.

I can't believe they charge 2 hours labor for heat shield, that's a rip off.


I am going to bring car to second dealer and not say anything and see what price they work up then mention warranty. Do any of you have any suggestions? Also odd that he dealer 1 quote said heat shield would have to be prepaid upon ordering. While at the dealer they replaced windshield wiper moto
 

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Do Midas still have your heat shields?
 

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No they don't, called them today. When I brought it in there it was to just have a look and diagnose. never occurred to me to make sure heat shields were put back on or kept at least. doesn't matter the condition of them either. Dealer said they just needed to be on there to be covered.

I know from being under the car the heat shields weren't that bad (rusted and all)

Also Question: If dealer does the warranty work, do the o2 sensors get replaced as well?
 

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I don't know how things go in the US but I would be calling Midas HQ and requesting payment for my shields that have been thrown away.
 
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That dealer is charging you book labor to exchange the heat shields. You are being ripped off for two reasons: 1. There aren't any (or very many) to "replace"; 2. They'd have to transfer over the heat shields when doing a warranty exchange anyway.

I could see paying for new parts, but I'd pay zero for new labor. Sounds like they don't know what they're doing (service writer end) or they know exactly what they're doing and trying to squeeze some high-margin dollars from you since warranty work pays next to nothing for the tech and dealership.

Worst case, I'd offer to supply heat shields for the warranty swap, but that's it. I'd call SOA directly and/or work with another dealer. You can buy the shields yourself from an online vendor/dealer for cheaper than parts counter retail.

P.S. The two hours is book time for removing the manifold and unbolting/cutting bolts and reinstalling. This is covered by the warranty exchange.

P.P.S The oxygen sensors are also not normally replaced, they are transferred. However, since it's a "warranty" swap, if the dealer damages the sensor, they could replace it and bill it to warranty, or make you buy new ones since they would be "out of warranty". Call SOA and get a hard answer on this possibility.
 

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That dealer is charging you book labor to exchange the heat shields. You are being ripped off for two reasons: 1. There aren't any (or very many) to "replace"; 2. They'd have to transfer over the heat shields when doing a warranty exchange anyway.

I could see paying for new parts, but I'd pay zero for new labor. Sounds like they don't know what they're doing (service writer end) or they know exactly what they're doing and trying to squeeze some high-margin dollars from you since warranty work pays next to nothing for the tech and dealership.

Worst case, I'd offer to supply heat shields for the warranty swap, but that's it. I'd call SOA directly and/or work with another dealer. You can buy the shields yourself from an online vendor/dealer for cheaper than parts counter retail.

P.S. The two hours is book time for removing the manifold and unbolting/cutting bolts and reinstalling. This is covered by the warranty exchange.

P.P.S The oxygen sensors are also not normally replaced, they are transferred. However, since it's a "warranty" swap, if the dealer damages the sensor, they could replace it and bill it to warranty, or make you buy new ones since they would be "out of warranty". Call SOA and get a hard answer on this possibility.
You are trying to treat it as all one job. It is not. I am sure there may be some dealers that would treat that way but most will not see it that way.

One job is to replace the catalytic converter under warranty. However Subaru most likely will not consider covering the converter if the heat shields are not in place. This leads to a separate job.

That job is replace the missing heat shields. Flat rate is 2 hours + parts. Most dealers are not going to let the OP supply his own parts.

He may not like the price the dealer is charging but he is not being ripped off. There may be another dealer willing to do it for less.

He should start by going back to Midas and have them replace the heat shields, even if it means they have to source replacements.
 

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You are trying to treat it as all one job. It is not. I am sure there may be some dealers that would treat that way but most will not see it that way.

One job is to replace the catalytic converter under warranty. However Subaru most likely will not consider covering the converter if the heat shields are not in place. This leads to a separate job.

That job is replace the missing heat shields. Flat rate is 2 hours + parts. Most dealers are not going to let the OP supply his own parts.

He may not like the price the dealer is charging but he is not being ripped off. There may be another dealer willing to do it for less.

He should start by going back to Midas and have them replace the heat shields, even if it means they have to source replacements.
On the 2006+ EJ25, the converter is the entire exhaust manifold, so replacing the converter assembly includes transferring the heat shields since Subaru does not sell the converter/manifold loaded. My "no additional labor" statement is assuming Subaru is covering the labor in the warranty exchange, and not just the parts cost of the new converter/manifold. They may not be covering the labor if the 2 hours labor charge is for the R/R of the converter/manifold.

At this point, I'd ask for a breakdown/explanation of the labor quote. If that's because Subaru isn't covering labor for the whole job (R/R manifold and transfer and/or install shields), then that's understandable. If it's just for installing the new heat shields, it's B.S. as that's part of the converter/manifold swap.

Charging additional labor "by the book" because it's a job being done at the same time is like being charged for labor for a timing belt change while paying for a head gasket job. It's just double-dipping.
 

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I'd just leave the heat shields off and not worry about it at this point. That's what I did on my '09 when it started rattling.
 

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I'd just leave the heat shields off and not worry about it at this point. That's what I did on my '09 when it started rattling.
That would be OK if the OP wasn't looking to have the converter replaced under warranty.
 

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Charging additional labor "by the book" because it's a job being done at the same time is like being charged for labor for a timing belt change while paying for a head gasket job. It's just double-dipping.
I totally agree with you on the ethics of this. Unfortunately this is way to common of a practice.
 

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You are trying to treat it as all one job. It is not. I am sure there may be some dealers that would treat that way but most will not see it that way.

One job is to replace the catalytic converter under warranty. However Subaru most likely will not consider covering the converter if the heat shields are not in place. This leads to a separate job.

That job is replace the missing heat shields. Flat rate is 2 hours + parts. Most dealers are not going to let the OP supply his own parts.

He may not like the price the dealer is charging but he is not being ripped off. There may be another dealer willing to do it for less.

He should start by going back to Midas and have them replace the heat shields, even if it means they have to source replacements.
Unless they are going to install the heat shields and then take them back off to replace the converter and then install the shield a second time they have no standing to charge twice for doing the job once.

Even if it is treated as two separate jobs, if they are performed at the same time there should be a deduction for any overlap in labor between the two jobs. They may be able to rationalize it with some shifty logic but that doesn't make it right.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for the feedback and process. Warranty work WOULD cover heatshields if they were on there. and of course now that they are not, there is no covereage for the shields. Dealer service guy said they can't replace warranty catalytic and NOT do the heat shield due to liabaility (I get that). This dealer wanted $200 more for the parts than another. So What I did tonight was drop it off at another dealer and see what they come up with and pricing. I'll call SOA and see if they can work in the heatshields. I do have a call into Midas corp. I feel Midas manager should have returned the heatshileds/or put them on. I get why they didn't but one thing I learned was never to assume. They shouldn't have assumed to trash them A friend seemd to think that Midas should have know this could have been a warrantied part; they ar ein the exhaust business.


All the heast shield were removed. Now on this 2010 convertor, are the heatshield sold as one unit with convertor usually? I gues they aren't because parts can be ordered. I'm hoping they replace the o2 sensors as well.

Told friend I should just go to junk yeard remove some old heatshields and throw them on my car! Then delaer can replace those. Just crazy logic from warranty- if they were on there then they be replaced under warranty anyways,. but because they aren't we charge you.
 

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I've replaced heatshields with fiberglass header wrap and been totally satisfied; better insulation and MUCH less expensive. Just be sure to use the silicone coating as the wrap is fragile once the sizing burns off. I found several options on Amazon for little more than pocket change.
 

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The dealer may have replaced the shields if they had damaged them trying to swap from one header to the next. Same deal for the O2 sensors.

However, the dealer is reluctant to eat any sort of cost, especially if their arm is being twisted for doing "out-of-warranty" warranty work (converters are federally mandated coverage for 5 years/100,000 miles, whichever comes first). It's nice of SOA to cover the converter, but much more and it's an extra gift.

Fair deal with SOA/dealer would be to pony-up for the parts cost (heat shields) so they can install while doing the swap. Satisfies the warranty requirement and you don't pay for double-dipped labor.

Then go after Midas for reimbursement. They're more likely to cut you a check with a paid invoice from a Subaru dealer for parts rather than source replacements themselves. Your original shields have long been shredded by the local scrap yard, more than likely.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well great news. I went to another dealer and had them look at it and such. They called me later in the day and said The catalytic convertor WOULD be covered under warranty and because there are no heatshield that thos too would be replaced in warranty along with the two O2 sensors. WHEW +the offered a courtesy for the next few days while we wait for parts. Friendly and never questioned anything.

Midas regional guy called me today. Stated he was unhappy that the shop looked at my car and never put iton paper. HE sounded l pissed that wasted time vs not chargeable time. I explained befor he ripped into the manager that I still might be able to get them covered under warratny. Also stated that they should have been kept/reattached. I've been going to this shop for 18 years and have sent letters of compliments probably 5x but manager of 15 years left over a year ago (just not the same). **** I use buy those guys lunches/breakfast for the work they have done and helped out.

So looks like the exhaust will be covered. I think there is a tiny leak on the muffler and flanges are weak. but I guess save that for another day.
 

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Midas regional guy called me today. Stated he was unhappy that the shop looked at my car and never put iton paper. HE sounded l pissed that wasted time vs not chargeable time. I explained befor he ripped into the manager that I still might be able to get them covered under warratny. Also stated that they should have been kept/reattached.
In my opinion, he should rip them a new one for at least two reasons: They shouldn't be doing work "off book", even if it's non-billable. Also, whether it's you or Subaru who is out the money to replace the lost parts is irrelevant. WTH are they doing losing or discarding parts off your car? He's right to ream them out for that, too.

I've been going to this shop for 18 years and have sent letters of compliments probably 5x but manager of 15 years left over a year ago (just not the same). **** I use buy those guys lunches/breakfast for the work they have done and helped out.
It is a shame when a formerly great business changes hands and declines, but that's life. It's time to find a new garage.
 

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I'mm too much of a nice guy, but you are right, he should rip them a new one for not billing out and throwing them out. from the regional managers guys viewpoint I can understand; they should at least have a record of the visit and what they found. Regional manager said he still has yet to view security camera footage of the visit. I stirred the pot on that one, yikes. Regional manager midas guygave his opinion about heat shields and what a farse they are in many circumstances; definitely talked old school!
 
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